Gotta Give It To Our City Leaders. They’ve Got Sneaky Down To A Science
In November, Great Falls voters, voted AGAIN on marijuana in city limits. AGAIN, it passed. AGAIN, the city officials took it upon themselves to make sure the shops couldn't be built anywhere except industrial areas.
I first wrote about this in July when I found out Cascade County voters had to vote on pot on in Great Falls for a third time. Then, when I heard Julie Bass on the 560 morning show, I wrote ANOTHER article that pointed out all of her gas-lighting and to drive home the fact that someone who lives in Yellowstone County was heading an organization to get pot banned here because they couldn't get it banned in the county they live in.
Just before the election, Judge David Grubich ruled that the City of Great Falls was wrong with their ban. We covered that as well. November came and Great Falls said yes to selling pot in the city limits and yes to selling pot in Cascade County and yes to taxing that said marijuana to use the money for our town. It should be all cleared up and business licenses should be being issued as you read this, right? Think again.
From The Electric I learned that the city, before the election, (because they knew it would pass because it had passed before.) passed regulations that stated:
dispensaries and testing laboratories would be allowed as a permitted use in either light or heavy industrial districts;
cultivation would be a conditional use in light industrial districts and a permitted use in heavy industrial districts;
manufacturing would be a permitted use only in the heavy industrial districts.
You've got to give it to the people we put in office in Great Falls. They don't give a damn what you and I want unless a judge forces it on them. They're smart enough to see what the people want and find ways around it.
To add insult to injury, the Yatskos have to sue Great Falls, AGAIN, because the city STILL refuses to let them open their shop that they've been paying rent on this whole time, as the city didn't process their application when it was submitted and they would have been able to operate as a nonconforming use. Honestly, it seems like they have a reasonable claim.
Montanans love marijuana. Pat Frisch from 560 KMON regularly posts about how much money Montana and Cascade County are making on marijuana sales. We're talking over a million dollars a month in Cascade County. People want it and they're buying it and obviously consuming it responsibly as we haven't had any reefer fueled crime sprees this year.
There are still just enough residents that fail to educate themselves on marijuana use that don't want it near a church or school and they feel they need to rally "for the children" or "to keep Great Falls great". Unfortunately that also includes people, like Lola Galloway, who know so little about what they're against, that she said it could be a drain on the power grid. It would be really funny if it weren't so important to hold them to the will of the people, and not the "Reefer Madness" attitude we have with our elected officials.
Honestly, I'm fine with keeping marijuana and liquor away from schools, as long as you hold casinos and bars and liquor stores to the same standards. If I remember right, a church wanted to open next to a downtown bar, and the city officials found that that was a reasonable request, so they modified their rules. THAT is NOT ok. It's all the same rules for anything like this or no rules.
It all ALWAYS comes down to who we put into office. We're stuck with what we've got. Our chance for change came and went in November. Honest to god, we have got to get regular Great Falls people, not our Great Falls career politicians, into office. Otherwise, our power grids may fail from all of the marijuana growing and smoking in Great Falls.
Next week, Rick Tryon has agreed to do an interview with me, so we'll get a City Commissioners side of the story.